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Hey guys. This is my first time on this blog and my first time booking a Royal Caribbean cruise. I usually book with Cruisesonly and they usually give me perks and incentives for continuing to book with them usually in the form of OBC. I am trying to decide if doing this group cruise with you all would be worth giving up those incentives. So convince me guys...what's the big deal with 'group cruising'? What kind of 'special group activities' would be worth giving up several hundreds of $$ worth of OBC?

thanks!

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While you might not get OBC, I'm pretty confident that you'll get better service based on personal experience with the agency. In addition, there will be perks onboard and special events for those that booked through the group. In addition, you'll have an agent onboard should you have any problems. 

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Welcome!

On the Royal Caribbean Blog group cruises, it's really about taking a cruise with the folks from this site (including myself) and enjoying a cruise with other Royal Caribbean fans who really "get it".  We're a great bunch and we organize a number of events onboard.  Here are a few recaps from past group cruises that I think will shed some light on what to expect:

https://www.royalcaribbeanblog.com/podcast/episode-163-freedom-of-the-seas-group-cruise-review

https://www.royalcaribbeanblog.com/2017/03/01/abc-islands-live-review-royal-caribbean-blog-podcast

https://www.royalcaribbeanblog.com/2017/03/01/abc-islands-live-review-royal-caribbean-blog-podcast

In terms of more tangible benefits, folks that book the group cruise in our group with MEI Travel do get some bonus rewards and "thank yous".  What it can be will depend on the sailing and how many folks book into the group, but on past group cruises it has taken the form of onboard credits, lunches at specialty restaurants and private shore excursions.

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  • 2 months later...

I agree with Cruisinmom315.  I have always used a larger internet cruise travel agency in the past so this is my first experience with MEI Travel.  I have been impressed so far with all my interactions with them.  Their response to my questions has been quick and their suggestions have been spot on with what we wanted.  Yes you might get some extra OBC with a large agency and I thought that was the best way but MEI is making me rethink that strategy. The extras so far with the group cruise has more than made up for the OBC I might have received.  I am so excited to be going on the group cruise on Harmony of the Seas.  Come join us for the fun.  As Matt says it's more fun to cruise with friends!

 

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12 hours ago, Cruisinmom315 said:

I just booked this group cruise and am so excited about it and I loved working with MEI travel and will work with them in the future - great company. They figured out exactly what I needed and wanted and got a deal for me. You should join LuciaS!

Thank you for supporting our sponsor!

21 minutes ago, jlwrinkle said:

I agree with Cruisinmom315.  I have always used a larger internet cruise travel agency in the past so this is my first experience with MEI Travel.  I have been impressed so far with all my interactions with them.  Their response to my questions has been quick and their suggestions have been spot on with what we wanted.  Yes you might get some extra OBC with a large agency and I thought that was the best way but MEI is making me rethink that strategy. The extras so far with the group cruise has more than made up for the OBC I might have received.  I am so excited to be going on the group cruise on Harmony of the Seas.  Come join us for the fun.  As Matt says it's more fun to cruise with friends!

Thank you for supporting our sponsor!  And you're so right, cruising with friends is the way to go!

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MEI is great.  My MEI TA (Jacki) also keeps an eye of the sales, automatically.  It's great to get an email letting me know the fare went down and I picked up some OBC.

On my upcoming B2B on Oasis I had to re-book because RL got in the way and all it took was an email to Jacki.

I know most of that doesn't apply to the group cruise but a TA sure makes life easier.

She also handled a Disney World vacation for me.

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So sad...I didn't get time off for the group cruise =(

I may be able to go on harmony in October for my birthday though. Also my family left it up to me to plan our family trip next year so I picked Symphony of the seas in May from Barcelona to Italy....aaaaaaahhhhhhh.Soooooo excited!!!!!!!!

The 'problem' is that this sailing has port of call that I actually want to explore, I won't get that much time on the ship..so I will HAVE to go on the Symphony twice to get the full experience. Damn! hehehe

 

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On 7/7/2017 at 9:57 AM, cookingyo said:

Matt,

I'm trying to decide which specialty dining package to get.  I know the group is planning on doing a Hibachi night.  Do we know which night that would be on yet?

Check your Cruise planner. Should appear in your calendar.

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